“Roses have both petals and thorns, my dark flower. You needn’t believe something weak because it appears delicate. Show the world your bravery.”
Publisher: Little, Brown
Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery
Release date: September 20th, 2016
Dates read: July 11-19th, 2017
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ / 5
Review (spoiler free):
Every time I read a mystery novel I am reminded of how much I love them, and Stalking Jack the Ripper was no exception. YA mysteries, murder or otherwise, are pretty far and few between, and this 19th century one was fun, exciting, and definitely creepy. The fact that it was based on a real well-known string of murders made it even more interesting to see how the author would weave in the real events with the fiction. The characters were well-developed, the dialogue was witty, and the story line kept me on the edge of my seat. I had so much fun reading this book and I can’t believe I didn’t pick it up sooner!
I loved Audrey Rose as a character. Kerri Maniscalco did a great job of writing her as a woman who broke gender norms without tearing down other girls at the time. When I first went into the book, I was expecting serious “I’m-not-like-other-girls” vibes from Audrey Rose, but I didn’t get those at all. Although she was not interested in the same things as the other women in the story, she didn’t degrade them or think of them as below her like the main character does in most historical fiction novels where a woman goes against the gender norms of the time. It was clear that Audrey Rose had a lot of respect for her aunt and cousin, even though they didn’t always agree on everything. She also didn’t shame the prostitutes who were killed by Jack the Ripper either, unlike some of the others in the story. I do wish there had been more female characters in the story though, because besides Audrey Rose, the rest of the main characters were male. However, Audrey Rose was a great character in her own right.
Audrey Rose and Thomas’ relationship was PERFECT. It was low-key hate to love but it was clear that it was all teasing from the start. The slow burn was agonizingly perfect, and I loved how they grew closer and learned to trust each other as the story went on. Their bond felt very genuine, and I adored the witty banter that was timed perfectly throughout the book. I’m so excited for their relationship to develop further in book two!
One issue I had was this book was the writing at times. It wasn’t bad and was I was fine with it most of the time, but I feel like some of the narration was a little redundant. Some sentences felt a bit repeated or unnecessary, but maybe that’s just my own preferences. I’m also usually pretty bad at predicting plot twists in books, but I picked up on who the murderer was pretty much right away in this one. That’s not necessarily a bad thing though, because the reveal at the end made sense, and I didn’t even come close to predicting the motive!
I really liked how this book was pretty much self-contained and wrapped everything up, but still left room for a sequel. Cliffhangers are fun, but a good resolution is nice as well. Overall this book balanced fun and creepy so well and I had a great time reading it. This book is definitely a new favorite of mine! I’m so glad that I have an ARC of Hunting Prince Dracula because I plan to dive into it ASAP!
Have you read Stalking Jack the Ripper yet? What did you think?